Caught in a Jam

Washington has eight of the 100 worst bottlenecks in the nation

May 27, 2021

Rob Smith

trucks in a traffic jam

This story is featured in the May/June issue of Seattle Business magazine. Subscribe here to access the print edition.

You probably havent been stuck in traffic much during the past year as the pandemic forced remote work, but for those who must drive, traffic congestion remains pronounced.

Washington has eight of the nations worst bottlenecks for trucks, according to the American Transportation Research Institutes annual list.

The worst is at the Interstate-5 bridge (Columbia River Crossing) between Vancouver and Portland. The report notes that the average speed at the Columbia River Crossing is only 45.9 miles per hour. The posted speed limit is 60 miles per hour. The bridge is the 23rd worst bottleneck in the United States.

Other major bottlenecks include I-5 at I-90, I-5 at State Route 16 in Tacoma and I-5 at State Route 18 in Federal Way.

Another report by personal finance website WalletHub finds that the state ranks as the third worst for drivers because of congestion, steep gas and vehicle prices, high rates of car theft and poor road quality. Only Hawaii and California fared worse.